In the summer of 1975, Barry Flynn and his pal Walt Ward steal clams in the shallow bays behind southern New Jersey’s offshore islands. Venturing at night in Barry’s flat-bottomed garvey, they drop their “snoop scoop” into other men’s clam beds, dredging up a boatload of cherrystones and littlenecks in minutes. Barry does it for beer money. Walt does it for thrills. One morning Barry’s boat breaks down and he rows to shore. There he meets Rachel Glenn, a cook at a school for the mentally challenged. Hiding from the world because one side of her face droops with palsy, Rachel hasn’t left the school in years. Barry, with a permanently twisted foot, finds an acceptance with Rachel he never found elsewhere, and begins helping her venture into the world. It is a world, however, where he may soon be tossed in jail.